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April 21, 2023

IDS #141 - Butter, Puppets, and Toast (w/ Heywood Banks)

IDS #141 - Butter, Puppets, and Toast (w/ Heywood Banks)
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Legendary comedian Heywood Banks talks to Mike and Darin about the inspiration behind Toast, Big Butter Jesus and several other classic comedy songs! Talking to him was a thrill and a delight. We really hope you enjoy this episode.

All audio clips and original songs were used with permission by Heywood Banks.

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Episode 141 - Heywood

Mike: [00:00:00] All right, Darren. Good luck. Thank you.

Darin: Thank you, Mike.

Heywood: Hey, wow. Here's both ends of the row. Yes,

Darin: sir. And Haywood. Are you ready? Uh, sure. Okay. Fantastic. Uh,

Mike: so, I mean, I don't know if, uh, our show, this is, this is my basement. So this is, this show is very, this show has grown from us, uh, talking at, at scouts when our kids were in scouts.

Mm-hmm. And we noticed that people would listen to what we're saying, which is pretty unnerving. Um, yeah,

Darin: absolutely. And then we thought, well, they started being entertained. Yeah. And we thought, well, maybe other people would start. And they started actually like, They would purposely sit around us to see what are these two knuckleheads gonna talk about this week?

Mike: Yeah. So, uh, so we've, we've slowly grown over the years and, uh, now we're to the point for, for me and for Darren, this is a huge deal. You, you're agreeing to come onto our show. You're, you're a, uh, You're our first real

Darin: star.

Heywood: Oh, well thank you. Thank you. It's that. That's a low bar

Mike: again. I'm in [00:01:00] my low bar.

Darin: Yeah, I'm in my basement. Well, you know, we had, uh, Megan Mitchell, she was a guest on our show. She's a Cincinnati journalist, and two weeks after she did our show, she went on to interview. Uh, the first lady, Jill Biden, so we catapulted her career.

Heywood: Wow. Yeah. You know, it's good to have a booster. Yes, yes, exactly.

You know, the wind beats of our stool. Yeah.

Darin: All right. We are going to start here now. Hey, I'm Darren now. Mike, welcome to Irritable dad syndrome. This is a, a very special episode. We, we were, I can't explain how excited I am. I'm very nervous because we've had a, a handful of shows. He's driving me crazy. I know.

So nervous. We've had a handful of shows that had guests and usually we've screwed those up. So, but, uh, n never had, we had a guest of, uh, such haa caliber as we have this week. We have legendary comedian, and I'm, I'm, I'm sorry if I'm making you nervous. I'm sorry if I'm, Uh, [00:02:00] embarrassing you or whatever, but I'm, I'm sorry.

But the truth is, you're legendary. You've been around for 30, 40 years. Legendary comedian, songwriter, uh, singer extraordinaire, Mr. Haywood Banks. Haywood, thank you so much for being on irritable dad syndrome.

Heywood: My, my, my from my basement to your basement. Uh, thank you.

Darin: So just starting off, um, how long have you played guitar?

I'm fascinated with musicians. I want to know when did you start playing and what was the first song that you learned to play?

Heywood: Um, I was, uh, uh, 14. My, um, uh, my mom, uh, is musical or was musical and, uh, she, uh, she bought a, uh, Gibson, l g o guitar that I still have. And, um, uh, she's, she was lefthand, I'm left-handed.

She was left-handed and she tried to learn on it and she could never do it cuz they wanted to teach her right-handed. And, uh, I was going to, [00:03:00] uh, like church, you know, little church weekend things. And, uh, people were playing, you know, three or four chords of Kumbaya or whatever, you know, and I said, oh, that's cool.

You know, that's all you have to do. And so I, I started messing around on the guitar and, um, I. I reversed the strings. Mm-hmm. So it would be, it would be left-handed. And uh, um, that, uh, uh, January of, when I actually, I actually, I was 13, so that January, no, no, I was just turned, I was 14 cuz uh, uh, the, the Beatles landed in the United States and here's Paul McCartney playing left-handed.

Cool. Yeah. And so I went. Took some guitar lessons, a guitar le couple, you know, elementary guitar lessons, and they said, oh, you can't play left-handed. I said, well, what about him? What about Paul mcc? He's playing left-handed. [00:04:00] So I, that's the last, uh, last lesson I ever had. But that's, uh, that was 19, uh, 64.

So, okay. I, since then,

Darin: well, I think you're an incredible guitar player. I love your songs and you're hilarious. Uh, I think you're very funny. And were you ever in a band.

Heywood: Um, I was in, uh, I was in a trio in high school. We played, uh, uh, like Peter Paul and Mary songs and stuff like that. Uh, the, um, I had an Australian exchange student and it was he and I and then a, uh, a girl in our high school named, uh, crystal, Christine Lottie.

And she, she went on to become a movie star. I was gonna say

Darin: the Christine Lottie. Yeah. Yeah. She, she won an

Heywood: Emmy award, I believe. Yeah. When she was in the toilet. Yeah, she was, they called her, they call her name's. She, yeah. [00:05:00] But, but no, but it's not like she answers my calls anyway. But, uh, uh, so then I, I, so we played a little bit, and then I went to, went to college at, at, at Western Michigan.

And, and, uh, There was a little folk, uh, uh, like little folk club they had on the weekends for, um, uh, you know, people just come in and like an open mic night thing. And so I went down by, I played Rocky Raccoon and, and you know, a co maybe a couple songs that I'd written. And, uh, I just got, you know, I was very nervous when I did that and just gradually, you know, worked my way up into, um, uh, You know, playing more.

Then I had, I had a, uh, my roommate, uh, played guitar and so he and I played stuff together for a

Darin: long time. Do you remember, do you remember the name of your band?

Heywood: Uh, it was, uh, uh, The first one was the [00:06:00] good, the bad, and the ugly. I was the ugly. Okay. Yeah.

Darin: So,

Mike: and uh, that's, that's kind of a bated question cuz Darren isn't a band, he's trying to figure out a name for it.

So he is always asking for, for band name. Well, no, what the first, I just thought

Darin: the first band I was in, uh, I didn't name it, but we were the Sylvester, Sylvester is a, is a proper name. You can't pluralize Sylvester unless all three people are named. Sylvester, which we weren't. It was, uh, Mike Al and, and Darren.

So that was a really stupid name for a band. Yeah, I think.

Heywood: Great. It's great, you know, it's, it has mystery to it. How are you, Des Which

Darin: Sylvester are you? Yeah, so Griffin,

Heywood: I can't think of what the, I thought of a weird, there was some weird. Uh, weird word that I heard. I thought, oh, that'd be a good name for a band.

It was just some, I dunno, probably some skin condition or something. I thought [00:07:00] it was

Mike: interesting that you, you mentioned the, um, left-handed, and then I think you said it was your, your, uh, your mother, they tried to make her do things right-handed Yeah. For a period of time. So yeah, they, they, oh my God, we have a left-handed child.

The church comes in the, the federal government. Everybody needs to change this person. So I, I grew up in the eighties and I'm, I'm kind of this estr. I'm also left-handed, but only with writing. Everything else is, is right-handed. And my perception of that is that at some point they were, they were teaching me how to, uh, do everything else and they just saved writing for the last bit before we all got emancipated.

And it was okay to be left-handed once again. So, I'm a weird hybrid.

Heywood: Yeah. This, well, I mean, I, I'm. Evidently older than you. And you know, just from, just from this picture I'm seeing on the side of my phone here. Uh, but, uh, yeah, I just, you know, I mean, there's no school desk that's left-handed. My, my, my grandfather was a, uh, [00:08:00] uh, an artist and he, he painted signs and he tried to teach me how to.

Paint. He would, you know, do beautiful old English lettering and just go, you know, just gorgeous, beautiful, precise lettering. He tried to teach me, but I kept dragging my hand through everything, so that didn't work out. Yeah. You know, it's a, it's like, it's like a series of, of failures, like, okay sports.

Nope. Uh uh, let's see. Uh, school? Nope. Uh, let's, let's laugh here. Well, uh, you know, I'm funny, I guess. I dunno if people laugh at me. I'm funny looking way, you know. So now with what you're

Darin: given, and now be honest with me. Have you, were you funny as a kid growing up?

Heywood: Well, as a kid it's called, uh, being obnoxious.

Yeah. Right. And, uh, you know, and. Uh, not paying attention in class and looking out the window and not applying yourself. I got that. All those, yeah, all that. So I never, you know, I never got, there was no, uh, positive [00:09:00] reinforcement from a anything. My, my father was a, uh, came over from Scotland when he was six, and his father w had been a coal miner and, and, uh, He, you know, he grew up in a very poor household and he couldn't imagine how, you know, he, he, he was the first one in his family to become, uh, to go to college and he couldn't imagine how, you know, I, the only a I got was cuz it was in gym cuz I brought my jock strap, you know, that was good.

We're, we're being, you know, we're, you know, having any kind of a. You know, positive reinforcement. But you know, the te and I remember in seventh grade I was, you know, the teacher would say something and I would, you know, something would pop into my head and I, and, and outta my mouth and everybody would laugh.

And, and it, it just be, you know, that became like just kind of a little positive re enforcement. Yeah. But you know, that, you know, at the time it didn't mean anything, but, you know, um, [00:10:00] Luckily I did. You know, I knew there was, there was no future in me for doing anything else. Yeah. You know, and I was a, I was a, I was a folk singer for a long time.

That's what I wa, that's what I did for a l you know, for my, I, I dropped outta college when I was 20 and, uh, it wasn't until. About, uh, when I was about 33 that I first thought of becoming a comedian, I was doing some funny things in between the songs just to keep the, the, um, you know, keep the show going.

But, uh, you know, I never thought of, you know, being a comedian. Mm. Yeah. Mm-hmm. Until I was, I, I, there's a lot of, uh, There's a lot of unemployment involved. Yeah. In, in doing this or being, you know, any kind of musician, you know, they, they, they, in, in the early eighties, I would, uh, uh, drive to [00:11:00] Kalamazoo, Michigan from my house, and I had, was married, been married since, uh, 1976.

We had two little kids. I drive Kalamazoo. I'd, um, play for two nights, make $400, you know, spend the night at somebody's on somebody's couch, drive back home. And then our, our mortgage was $343 and 41 cents. Oh, wow. Yeah. And. Somehow my, uh, my wife is a magician and she was to feed us. I would work, I wouldn't play for the next two weeks or three weeks, you know?

So it's like somehow she was able to feed a family for with, uh, you know, on uh, on $59. Wow.

Darin: Isn't that incredible? I mean, you know, Dustin Hoffman was on Letterman one time and they were talking about, you know, how long they, uh, their struggling period and, and involved that, you know, sleeping on someone's couch, [00:12:00] living, you know, in the back of your car for a couple weeks and, and doing all that stuff.

And, uh, it's, it's incredible to see, you know, think about then and, and you now. So, I mean, you know, kudos for sticking with it. Yeah. A lot of people don't stick with it.

Heywood: Yeah, I had, I had plenty of opportunity from, you know, members of my family saying, Hey, you know, have you thought of a five year plan? It took real estate.

Mm-hmm. Um, maybe you can, you know, do some other things like. You know, no,

Darin: go into woodworking, you know, left-handed

Mike: coal mining is making a comeback.

Heywood: You could do that. Yeah. Coal mining. Yeah, I heard that. It's a, it's a big boom industry, you know, but the, but there was no, there was no second choice. And it wa it, I mean, I had, um, you know, I knew that was the only thing I was any good at.

And I, and I, and everything else just seemed so boring. I've, yeah. You know. Friend friends that went into [00:13:00] selling paper, you know, like, and you know, just like, uh, on the office, you know? Mm-hmm. Only, you know, and, and say, Hey, you know, you can get in selling paper, you know, to these companies and, and, uh, say, no, I don't wanna do that.

Well, he, he quit, you know, he was doing so some side gigs, but, you know, I don't know, you know, it's like I'm play and playing by myself. I, I had, I had three other people in my band, and they, they're my family. Mm-hmm. So, You know that I, they, you know, so that's how the check got split up every, you know, when, whenever I made one.

Yeah. So anyway, back to, but back to that. So I didn't, uh, so there'd be, you know, sometimes two, three weeks, a month that I wouldn't have any a gig and, um, There was a comedy club up in, in, uh, in Lansing, Michigan. And my and my wife said, why don't you go up to the comedy club and, uh, see if you can do something up there.

And so, so I went up and, uh, I just took all the serious songs outta my show [00:14:00] and left kind of the, you know, the little funny bits. And so I played my, you know, I. Had flies eyes and you know, some of my 18 wheels on a big rig, you know, some of these early songs, Uhhuh. I had these and I, so I played those and I played, you know, and I did some funny bit, you know, little bits that I had and they hired me to middle for that weekend.

It was, this was on Monday, the middle for that weekend. And then had me come back and headline like, uh, a month later. Oh, that's great. So it was, Pretty, but at, because at that time I've already put in my 10 or 20,000 hours, you know, of, of being on stage. Mm-hmm.

Darin: I didn't know those songs were that old. Um, because when it was the nineties, the first time I ever heard you, uh, I used to live in Tennessee, a little town called Johnson City, and a buddy of mine moved down from Indianapolis and he had brought with them this, uh, Bob and Tom show CD and was playing it for me.

And the first song years [00:15:00] I heard was 18 wheels on a big Rig. And I, I listened to it. 50 times a hundred times. Laughed myself sick every single time. Still today it's, it's still just as funny, but I didn't know it. W when did you write that?

Heywood: Uh, probably, probably around 72 7. Well, no, it'd be, uh, 77, 78, something like that.

You know, I remember being at a bar and just, Somebody said, play a truck song. And I just went, oh, there's 1, 2, 3, 4, 7. And people started laughing and I said, oh, well, let's back 'em up. You know? And then,

Darin: so that was just spontaneous like that?

Heywood: Yeah, it was a, yeah, it was kind of a spontaneous

Darin: song. Uh, uh, amazing.

So I, yeah. That

Mike: brings up I, a question that I have, uh, regarding toast, which I'm, I think everyone is contractually obligated to listen to toast. Yes. At some point. Um, but. [00:16:00] I'm fascinated by that song because I, I have to know it, it sounds to me it's either just a moment of complete brilliance, I'm gonna do this, or it's I'm going on stage in two minutes and I have nothing.

Grab a toaster and I'm gonna beat this thing and say things that rhyme and see what happens.

Heywood: It's, well, it's, it's a combination of both. Um, it, you know, back in, in the, uh, In the eighties, there was a lot of performance art, you know, people like just doing weird stuff on stage and not, you know, not necessarily funny or it was just kind of like a happening kind of thing.

Yeah. And um, I remember seeing a guy, uh, go around and he was drumming on street signs and, um, I, and I just had, uh, Started being the, the really ex extreme Haywood character, you know, the super nerd guy. And, [00:17:00] um, so I just, I would go to Salvation Army and just see what weird thing, what possible weird thing I could do.

And, um, I thought well come, maybe I'll make toast on stage. So here's a toaster, maybe I'll make toast on stage. And, um, I was playing in, um, I am not sure how I got the gig, but some, some, for some reason, I was playing out in, uh, uh, the Bronx and, uh, I was playing in the basement of a, there, there was a comedy club in the basement of a disco.

Darin: And,

Mike: um, they love toast

Darin: down there, I'll tell you. And great combination. Yeah. Yeah. You go to the wrong

Heywood: floor and you're in trouble. And I was, but I was middling. And so, you know, there's a whole lot of ti you know, you do like 20 minutes and there's a whole lot of time in between where you're just sat sitting around and I had this bag, bag full of [00:18:00] props and, um, it was, this was.

Probably 1979 and there was, um, a disco going on upstairs. There was a disco upstairs that was still Saturday Night Fever. Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm. You know, it was, it was, you know, and, uh, very, you know, Italian disco upstairs. And so everything was, it was still, you know, staying alive up there. And, um, so I'm just, I'm just sitting down.

When I got out the toaster, I'm just like, I just like started tapping on it. I go, yeah, toast. Uh, coast to coast. I like toast all around the country and coast to coast. People say, what do you like most? I don't wanna brag. I don't wanna boast. I always told 'em, I like toast. Yeah, toast. And I went on stage and that was the first thing I played and they loved it.

And then they hated everything else [00:19:00] they did after that.

Totally bombed Uhhuh after that. Did not wanna hear one other thing I did and I said, well, I guess maybe I should move that towards the end of the show. Yeah. And it just, you know, it just the, the verses just kind of expanded, you know, just cuz that stuff rattles around in my head and Yeah. You know, just.

Darin: I can't even imagine you bombing. That's, that's that. Mm, I, I, knowing you now, I can't imagine you bombing, but yeah, I'm sure

Heywood: there, you know, there's, there's always a situation. I, you know, I've heard, you know, of all kinds of, you know, big people. I've heard Chris Rock talk about, you know, uh, having a show where he bombed.

Mm-hmm. Really, maybe there's not as many. Right. You know, I mean, there's certainly many for me, as there used to be, But there's always some, what fresh hell is this as Dorothy Park? You know, [00:20:00] it's, it always will come up that there would be something, you know, uh, you know, play like a lot of times, like playing a, uh, a corporate gig can be just horrible.

You know where cuz you're, you'll be in some gigantic. Uh mm-hmm. Room in a, in a convention center and you know, the ceilings are 30, 40 feet high and you're on a little stage and there's a, there's a dance of f uh, 40 foot dance floor in front of you. And then people are out all these round tables way out there.

Like, absolutely no. It's like, here, here's an example. One, one time, uh, I played, uh, I was playing. Um, And Cincinnati and Dayton. I was playing jokers in Dayton and I don't know the funny bone or something, or maybe, uh, go bananas or something. Okay. And, uh, this guy, uh, this guy who worked [00:21:00] for Kroger pharmacies came and saw me and, and go and go.

Bananas says, oh, you gotta come work. You gotta come do our Christmas show. And says, well, okay, okay. You know, then he came up to Dayton. He said, oh, you gotta come do the Christmas roll. I played back in, in. Go bonnets. Oh, we gotta play the date, so, okay, fine, fine, fine. So it was a, you know, it was a, a decent check, so I went and played and I, I played in bars for years.

Mm-hmm. I mean, when, for just, you know, there were these mountain jacks that were all over the place and you're basically corner in, in the holding tank, you know, for in the bar, you know, for people waiting to go to eat there, you don't want to hear anything, you know. And, um, so I don't, it doesn't bother me if people are, if people are talking, I don't care.

I'm still getting paid, you know? Yeah, yeah. And so, um, so I'm playing to the, to all these young, uh, pharmacists and there's some, like talking in the back and af after the show, you know, wasn't a [00:22:00] big deal. I didn't care. And after the show guy, oh, I'm so sorry. Oh, I can't believe these people talk. Do you think so?

The next year, every time I played gold, bananas or, or jokers, he would come in and say, oh, please, I'm so sorry about the last time. Please come in and, and play for, and do this this year's Christmas party. So I came out, so I said, fine. It was another nice check Christmas. So I went, I, I get up on stage and I played for 45 minutes to not a sound in the room, not a sound.

Uhhuh not. Titter, there was nobody talking nothing. And about halfway through it occurred to me, I said, this guy yelled at these people. That's what happened. He like said, how dare you, uh, you know, talk during hay, you know, Haywood, I am so mad. And, you know, and, [00:23:00] and so I don't know the, the night went by and, yeah.

Darin: Mm-hmm. I don't know. I did a show once the, and this was the most I'd been paid to do. Comedy and it was a, a benefit for, uh, uh, cancer research. And they had a dinner and then they had, uh, uh, they brought out all the things that they were going to auction off. Yeah. And then they showed a video and the, the, and God love them.

The video was all of these people currently suffering from said disease. Some people had survived, some people had not survived. Oh yeah. People were crying. Uh, everyone was getting all choked up. And then they took a break and then they bring out the, and I'm the opening act. They bring me out and uh, nothing is, and it was the round tables and their, some are way to the left, some are way to the right and I can't see anybody.

And I had no idea. But there was a silent auction going on. During, so all during all these people were just sitting there. I'm like, C, can you [00:24:00] really? Yeah, I'm that boring that you're just sitting there looking at your Facebook or whatever. I didn't know they were bidding on stuff while I was doing my, oh, my bit.

And it was painful. It was just like the longest I was, the 10 minutes, the longest 10 minutes of my life. But, uh, I, you know what? I got my check and yeah, afterwards I said, man, you were really funny. I was like, well, that's, thank you for. Not laughing while I was on there cuz I didn't hear

Mike: anything. When I hear stories like that, I feel bad that I wasn't there to heckle because I, I could have really had a lot of fun that night.

Heywood: Yeah. It's, you know, it's always some, you know, it, you know, you know God, people have h horrible things that they have to deal with. Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm. And just, You know, and, and I did a thing for Make-A-Wish and it's like, you know, oh, you know, we, the, I don't know, you know, it's, it is, it is just, you know, you hear these terrible stories that, that people have, and.[00:25:00]

You know, thank you for, you know, this last ride to Disney, Disney World or something, you know? Yeah. Mm-hmm. And then they say, and now some comedy. Yeah. Hey, nevermind. But you're just heard.

Darin: Yeah. Toast. Okay. Yeah. Yes. Yeah. So I wanna. I wanna back up a little bit and talk about some of your, what were your, some of your early, uh, not so much comedic, uh, inspirations, but musical cuz uh, my mom, I remember when I was a kid, I was going through her albums and I found she had five or six albums by the Smothers Brothers.

And I couldn't stop listening to the Smothers Brothers. I love them. And then, you know, uh, she, uh, showed me, uh, Arlo Guthrie's Greatest Hits in Alice's restaurant, which I listened to a thousand times. And, you know, listening to that, And to the Smothers Brothers, you know, helped me, I think grow into a a, I don't know, maybe a [00:26:00] better storyteller, I don't know.

But Who did you listen to that was musical and funny?

Heywood: Oh, to definitely Tom, Tom and Dick's mothers are just, you know, the, the, all those, so, you know, hangman, hangman, slack, your rope, slack it for, you know. Yeah. And I fell in a bat of chocolate and that well, that them, and, and, uh, uh, Tom Lear was actually the, when I, when I first started playing guitar, I, one of my first songs was, I don't know, I wrote a song called, uh, Me love's locked up in me Frigidaire today.

She said I'd never keep her, but she's kept quite well, I'd say Nice. You know, just, um, but Tom Lear when, when I first started playing this, this, uh, friend of my parents gave me, Hey, he might like these, uh, Tom Lear, uh, records. And, uh, it's, do, do you guys know who that is?

Darin: I've heard of, uh, The, uh, [00:27:00] was it, uh, something about the pigeons?

Um, yeah, poisoning pigeons in the park. Poisoning pigeons in the park. Poison. Okay. I need to check this out. Well, it's, it sneaks, it sneaks up on you. Yeah. So if you're in the crowd and he's playing, you think he's playing an actual song and then the chorus kicks in and that's where you find out that he's poisoning pigeons in the park.

And then you're like, oh, this is funny. Yeah,

Heywood: this is those little, those. Wise ones try and hide, but they sure go for peanut peanuts when coated with cyanide. Right, right. You know, does, you know, but, but he would, he, Tom Leer is really my, uh, my inspiration for, for songwriting of, of the idea of writing a pretty melody with, uh, subversive lyrics.

Mm-hmm. Yeah. You know, something, a real catchy, you know, Sweet, catchy melody. And then you, you, you know, like, uh, dust mites was like that, you know, to, um, my, uh, [00:28:00] it starts out when, when the shades of night are falling and you climb into your bed, um, there is no need for loneliness and crying. Uh, Because there's someone with you even in the darkest night, and though you cannot see that I'm, I'm not, I'm not lying.

Teeny little dust mites, ultra tiny dust mites, about 2 million in the average bed punches of them. Dust mites, MunchOn, little dust mites, snuggle, warm and cozy. Eat your head. But that's, that's like totally Tom Leer.

Darin: Yeah. So, uh, we live in Westchester, Ohio, which is right between Cincinnati and Dayton, Ohio.

Mm-hmm. The song that you wrote that put us on the map is Big Butter. Jesus. I used to drive. Sure. I used to drive past it every day. When I used to work in Dayton every single day, Hey, this big butter, Jesus. I, I would have friends come up and visit me from Florida or, or Tennessee or wherever they would want to see it.

Sure. They [00:29:00] would make the trip up there and they'd take pictures and, um, did the church ever, did they ever reach out to you about that?

Heywood: I've heard I'm not popular Uhhuh, uh, I, I think they would like to get ahold of me Uhhuh, but, uh, luckily I've stayed

Darin: away. Yeah. Now I was wondering if they were, if they were pissed about that or if they, you know, just laughed it off.

But I don't,

Heywood: they, the, uh, the preacher did seem like he had a, Great sense of humor from, you know, I heard a lot of people always came up and told me, you know, horror stories about the place. Yeah.

Mike: I would say that if you're going to put a large butter Jesus out front and not see the humor in it, right. Um, you don't have much of a sense of humor.

I mean, you, he, because he had to Okay. That they spent the money. Right. [00:30:00] It took months to build that. Yeah. Bit by bit. Yep. And coming out there every day and every day you have to look at that and say, Yeah, that's still a good idea. We should

Darin: still do this. Well, you know, once it caught fire and then, you know, the only thing left was the metal, uh, scaffolding inside.

It looked like Terminator, Jesus. Yes, yes, yes. Hell yeah. So my next question is, after you write a song that's that popular, that just goes insane, it was, would safe to say that's your most popular song, would you think, oh, no toast is toast. Okay. Yeah. Let's, let's call it your second most popular. How hard is it to write another song a after

Heywood: that?

You know, it's, it's not a, um, uh, there's, there's never a, there's never a problem because there'll be something else. You know? Every song I write is to me, I is like an ex, the, a big butter Jesus, or, or post. Mm-hmm. You know, so, so whether they are or not, you know, it's, there's no, um, I don't, [00:31:00] I, I'm not intimidated by the song.

At all, you know, and, and, uh, it's because there's other songs to be written. Mm-hmm. Um, that, that, that just ca that came out. I, I was on, uh, Gary Burbank's show and, uh, at W L W. And, uh, driving up to jokers and I drove pa past that thing and I said, what the hell is, you know? Yeah. And, uh, I, I was on stage at, that was another thing is I was on stage at, at Jokers.

I said, man, have you guys seen that giant Jesus statue? Mm-hmm. You know, and they, everybody kinda laughed. And I said, it looks like it made, it looks like it's, uh, carved out a butter. Yeah. And everybody laughed and I just went. Big butter. Jesus. And, and I, everybody laughed again. I said, oh, maybe I got a song here.

Yeah. So I, I went and, and wrote it, but it's, I don't know, you know, every, every, every song for, for [00:32:00] me is just like, you know, a, uh, it's an entity on itself. Mm-hmm. Whether it's, it turns out to be, you know, some. Huge song, or it's just some, you know, like, some kind of cool little thing that I did. Um, you know, I, I can't, um, it's the main thing is it's not in my head anymore.


Darin: Right. Well, I can't even imagine how I've, I've never written a song. I don't understand how people write a song. I don't know how they do the chord structure, how they, they rhyme the, the words, and then this is gonna be the chorus. And this, I, I, I have no idea, but I know, you know, 18 wheels was sp spontaneous.

I can't talk tonight. Mm-hmm. 18 wheels are spontaneous. Big butter. Jesus was spontaneous. And then, you know, when you were, uh, at the hotel and you heard the woman say they had to taser her again. Yeah. It's, it's like how fast did you run to a pen and paper to write that down?

Heywood: I, oh, I, I literally, I mean this, the, the, the story in the song is exactly, you know, I just, [00:33:00] I went, oh my gosh, that's Yeah.

A funny, it's funny that it's really a funny thing, you know, it's, it's.

You know when, when you're used, when you know, it's like, it is like tuning your brain into to one thing or another. You know? It's like if you own, if you just buy a Volkswagen Beetle, all of a sudden you see every Volkswagen Beetle on the road. Yeah, yeah. Right. You know, and it's, it's like pattern recognition or something.

It's like seeing, you know, faces in trees or rocks or something. It's like a human thing. And, and that's, that's the way, um, you know, writing a joke or anything like that. It's like, it's, it's like you just, I just have, you know, comedians or songwriters just kind of have their antenna up onto what, you know, what mm-hmm.

How something can. Can be, uh, put together, you know, some, like, like I, [00:34:00] I have this, um, I have this new song. I was gonna play this for you. Oh, cool. Oh

no, this is, I, I was just walking around my house. And this, this popped into my head. Never pick up a person by the head. Oh, it's proven to be an unpopular thing. The two never pick up a person by the head. It's even by the simple move

Darin: you

Heywood: may have. Seen an acrobat spinning through the air with someone holding them aloft to grip upon their hair.

You're mistaken to take this activity as one folks enjoy. I found, and over time, you're bound to find your friends won't want to hang around the boat. Remember what your father said? Never pick up a person by the head.[00:35:00]

Your technique and reflexes no one appreciates. It's annoying and convenient for those who participate. Like it said, in this certified letter I received from an attorney, folks fail to find it funny. When their trousers turn all uur, I can turn a face quiet. Then when you turn a pick up, a burier,

Never pick up a person by popular thing too. Never pick up a person by Try to keep in mind the simple rules. Pick an alternate. Depend there's a variety to choose a vigorous grip to lift the pits or hoisted grind. We'll do reframe. Come cranium Let's make a plan or go the awkward moment when I had my pop off in your hand.

Then you'll have to dig another holy Honda ship when you pick up a person by, no, no, [00:36:00] no. Watch your mother sin. Never pick up a person by, no, no, no, no.


Darin: Haywood. That was wonderful. That was awesome. I, I hate to say this, but your guitar was, we could barely hear the guitar. It kept cutting in and out. Oh, it did? Okay. Yeah, if you have a recording of it, um, and you can send that to us. We can just edit that into the podcast and then just, just then just edit around it.

But Oh my God, that's hilarious.

Heywood: Awesome. Try and get a recording of it. That's, I'm, I'm, I'm still trying to, trying to, Get through the song, you know? Yeah.

Darin: Well, I mean, in all the years that I've watched you and listened to you on Bob and Tom, it's those times where you can't get through the song, and then you got, you just keep going.

And then I'm laughing even harder with the, the, the introduction song, uh, me and Hi. And you, and hey, you. Oh. [00:37:00] I mean, my, I, I, I cough so much. I get into, you know, just fits tears and everything else, and it's just, it's hysterical. So never pick up a person that by the

Heywood: head. And that, that's another song actually.

Um, I have, we have good friends and their son married a, a girl named, you know? Mm-hmm. And, uh, then, um, my. Sister-in-law brought o uh, brought over girl, a woman named Hugh. And I don't, you know, it's like all the, all the names are actually Yeah. You know, people I actually have met, so, you know, to, it all sound like a, and then I have a, a friend whose son is named Hugh.


Darin: Uh, thank you. Uh, jumping back to, they had to taser her again. I'd seen an interview and you said that people come up to you a lot with their own, uh, uh, sayings that they've overheard and [00:38:00] Well, one did the, when you said that, it reminded me of the Lewis Black bit of, if it hadn't have been from my horse, I would never have made it through the first year of college.

Uh, which is a fantastic bit if you've never heard it, but no, I was out one time and I overheard a guy say, I accidentally bought a ukulele last night.

Mike: Got a

Darin: nice, really, and I said I, I'm sorry, but you have to explain how do you accidentally buy a ukulele and what he had done. And, and after he told me it wasn't as funny, but he, uh, was on Amazon and he was looking for a ukulele, and he found one. Then he put it in his shopping cart. His wife was shopping, and they have the same Amazon account.

She bought everything. So then a ukulele arrives to his door. Unbeknownst to him. Yep. So there you go. That's the story about that.

Heywood: Wow. Yeah. Yeah. Sometimes you just have to stop. Yeah, I know. [00:39:00] Unbeknownst that'd be a good name for a band. Yeah.

Mike: Actually almost sounds like a heavy metal band.

Darin: Unbeknown, unbeknown, un unbeknownst.

Mm-hmm. So have you, have you always ordered clean? Uh,

Heywood: yeah. Good. Yeah. Pretty. I mean, I have, I. Back, back in the day I was, I had a couple little, you know, goofy nuance, you know, uh, jokes. But like, I, I had a, um, a hockey knee pad or a shin, shin guard. Mm-hmm. And I go, Hey, look, my old, uh, jock strap, you know, you know, just stupid, you know, stupid stuff.

Yeah. But, uh,

Darin: Now you see that's, that's the second time. And, um, you're not ruining the interview, but I'm trying not to imagine you, uh, in the jockstrap, so you're got to stop. Yeah.

Heywood: Um, but no, I, um, I was, you know, I was [00:40:00] doing a little, you know, I don't know, you know, they're, when you're, when you're playing a bunch of. Crummy bars. Mm-hmm. You know, and to a bunch of drunks, it's like, just, it's, it's difficult to get their attention sometimes. So, you know, it's to drift over into that.

Mm-hmm. And, um, actually my wife said, uh, you said she, she kind of said, you should, you should just be clean. You, there's just no, no sense in, in, in doing that. You know? Cuz she also, she wanted her parents to be, come and see me and, and my kids. And also when, when I, when I play, like, especially when I started be doing, being Haywood, um, my, my kids came the show.

Mm-hmm. And, um, you know, so it's like, I, you know, I, I mean, I know. People that do blue stuff, you know, for their kids. But I just, you know, was not doing that. And it, and [00:41:00] um, also, it's easy, you know, if, if a, if a corporation, if a corporate group is looking at you to play, they don't know that you can take all the f bombs outta your cl outta your show.

Right? Yeah. You know, and they don't want to get fired, but, you know, because, or demoted, you know, because they hired some, you know. Right. Um, blue comedian, so, Yeah. Yeah. So it's, it's, you know, it's really helped. And it's also just, I, you know, I have entire families come to see me and everybody's laughing, even the teenagers, you know, so it's like, it's, it's, it's great to have that whole family experience without mm-hmm.

And, um, you know, without, without being, uh, you know, I'm, I mean, I'm not a kid's show. I don't do a kid's show. Right. But it's just an adult show that you can bring your kids to just because there's no, you know, I'm, I'm not. Pandering to, I'm not sing My Little Pony songs or something. You know, it's, it's just [00:42:00]

Mike: you, you may want, you may want to think about it and, and call it unbeknownst.

I don't know. Just to throw that, that's a free idea.

Darin: Head, shoulders, knees and toes. Head, shoulders, knees and toes is very popular with the young kids. They love that song. Yeah.

Heywood: But Raffi, you know, is still working, so you know,

Darin: he can have, you know, you mentioned that I'm surprised that, um, Do you strike me as a person who would have a very successful children's show if you decided to have a, a Haywood's Playhouse or, uh, you know, cuz Weird Al had a show for a while.

It, they canceled, but still, you know,

Heywood: I did, I I I actually did a, uh, a little TV show in Detroit for just, it just lasted one, one show and then they decided not to have it go any farther. Mm-hmm. And it was, Yeah, it was kind of like a, a, a kid show, but I don't know.

Darin: Do you have the video of that?

Heywood: Um, I think it's on, it might be online somewhere.

Darin: Okay. [00:43:00] I'd like to see that. That'd be fun. Yeah. Yeah. It was like, well,

Mike: George Carlin had a kid show for a while. I did. Oh yeah. He

Darin: was the

Heywood: cap. The conductor. Yeah. Conductor. Yeah.

Darin: That's, that's right. Yeah. I forgot that because

Mike: then he referenced it in one of his actual shows, Uhhuh, and he's like, I'm Mr. Fing conductor.

I know what I'm talking about. That's hilarious.

Darin: I totally forgot about that. Oh my god. You know, so I know you've, uh, you've been on the Bob and Tom show hundreds of times. And if, if you're uncomfortable answering this, just, just say pass and I won't, uh, I'll edit it outta the show, but, all right. I, I noticed, and this was after Bob had retired, uh, there were a few times where I thought, uh, somebody was going to jump across the table and choke somebody else.

Is, does that ever come close to happening in the commercial breaks?

Heywood: Um, I think, you know, [00:44:00] They're all the, the thing is they're all professionals. Yeah. Mm-hmm. You know, and people do have bad days, you know, and mm-hmm. And, but, um, it's, you know, and, and people do the show. They might, you know, and during the break they get up and, uh, and go to the bathroom, or go to the break room, get something to eat, you know, walk around, just kind of.

Think about stuff and come, you know, and then come back and sit down, and then the show commences. Mm-hmm. Um, but n not, not really. Okay. No, it's been, it's been, uh, uh, you know, for, well, all the times I. You know, it's usually, usually, usually, usually I'm the only one there and anybody wants to do anything. I forgot the lyrics of the song or I dunno what I'm doing.

And, but it's, it's usually just between, uh, Tom and I.

Darin: Well, the, the reason I asked [00:45:00] was because if you remember, you know, Charles Groden. Whenever he would be on Letterman, Charles Groden acted like he was just so pissed and he was always moody and grumpy and just cranky and irritable and, and you know, my wife watched it one day and she's like, what is this deal?

Why does he hate Dave? And I said, it's this big act. He always does this. And so

Mike: I, it's like the Jimmy Kimmel,

Darin: Matt Damon thing. Yeah, exactly. Exactly. So I mean, you know, I assume that you know, when you work with somebody for that many years, that there will be times that you get on their nerves, but I, I was wondering if they were upping the acting like they're, uh, pissed at each other.

Heywood: Thing. Well, to, I mean, to, I, Tom and I give each other crap all the time. Mm-hmm. You know, I've, I've known him for 30 years. Yeah. And I'm old. I'm actually like two or three years older than him. So, you know, I mean, he's still the guy, you know, it's like I still, you know. He is, he is. [00:46:00] He, he is. Um, I mean, he's, he's made up my, my.

Success possible. Yeah. Mm-hmm. He, he's just, you know, it's like I owe everything to Tom. Yeah. Um, and, and to, you know, you know, of seeing that there's actually, you know, some in this, in this rough uh, uh, in the rough form. There's some, you know, some talent under there or something that, you know, that he used for his show and it, you know, it's to totally.

It's Tom Griswold. He has just been wonderful to, to me. Yeah. And, and for tons of comedians, you know, back in the, back in the day mm-hmm. Before podcasts kinda ruined comedians,

Darin: boys just, it just got awkward.

Heywood: No, no. But, but, uh,

Darin: I, I don't think we're in competition with the Bob and [00:47:00] Tom show. No. No.

Heywood: But, but by that, because like when, I mean, I always tell people that are going on, if Tom says, how, how are you doing? He doesn't care. Mm-hmm. He wants your jokes. Right. Yeah. You know, and, and you, if you can tell your jokes in the morning and people won't remember it, you can stills tape same jokes at night.

Right. Thing is that people remember that it's, you know, they had a, you know, a great time and, um, but uh, yeah, he's, he's, I mean, Rodney Carrington and Todd Yan and mm-hmm. And, uh, uh, of course Pat God won and, you know, all, all these guys, you know, just owe, owe their living to, to Tom. Yeah. And, uh, his nurturing and, and.

You know, come on in, we'll record some songs for you and make a CD and, you know. That's awesome. He's just been tremendous. Now,

Darin: you probably, [00:48:00] or, or did they, I don't remember. Were you ever on the same morning as Tim Wilson?

Heywood: Uh, yeah. A few times. Sure. Okay.

Darin: Because Tim was one of my other favorites on the show, and just lightning in a bottle every time he was on.

Just, you're just guaranteed. You know, I, I would listen to him. Uh, on the way into work and you get there, it's like you don't want to go in cuz you wanna keep listening to Yeah. You know, to you or Tim or something like that to see what else they have going on. So, um, There

Mike: was in, uh, so getting ready for this, I was watching tons of, uh, Bob and Tom clips, uh, with you and him because I'd, I'd heard you, um, you know, on the radio outside of that I'd, I've listened to the songs on Spotify, but I was watching the actual Bob and Tom clips and something that struck me about it was, You would, you would be on there and everyone would be talking, and then all of a sudden you just reach around and pull out a guitar and just start going and everyone in the room shuts up at once.

And, and I was thinking [00:49:00] now, did they plan for him to do that at that point or is that just him saying, you know what, I want everyone to shut up and I'm just gonna do something

Darin: else right now.

Heywood: There, there is no plan ever, anywhere. There has never been a plan. There is no plan.

Darin: It's, but the, the,

Mike: the great thing about it is, yeah, I'm a, I'm a fan of, of radio in general, so, and I love how they, you know, uh, it's been like 20 years ago or so, they started putting cameras in there.

So Howard Stern, Opie, and Anthony, Bob and Tom, all of them, they all have cameras in there. And, um, you know, all of those shows whenever they have someone like you or someone with talent, once the person starts, they all dutifully stop. And they're watching and listening. So, you know, I get, there's a piece of it, but it, it just, it cracked me up every time.

I, I was like, oh, here he is reaching for the guitar. And it's like, they just slowly, they're all

Darin: done. Well, you know, I have a, a friend who always thought that all the laughing that went on in the studio was fake. You know, it's like they, they [00:50:00] couldn't possibly be laughing that hard. And I'm like, well, I'm laughing that hard at it.

Yeah. So why, why wouldn't they be? And also, you know, it's like they want the, you know, they want the performers to do well, and you're in a room with four or five other people. So Yeah. They're gonna laugh, they're gonna encourage, they're gonna, you know, make you think you're doing well, and then you do better when there's that positive reinforcement.

Heywood: I, my, uh, uh, never, never trust a puppet cd. I recorded live at a comedy club. Mm-hmm. And it was, Film there and there's the video of it. You see waitresses walking back and forth and drive crazy, crazy when they did it shot from the back. Mm-hmm. And people have commented, oh, you just faked this, you know, what's all this fake laughter in here?

It's like, it's a, it's a comedy club that happens in comedy clubs. Hopefully that's what happens in a comedy club is people laugh. Yeah. Yeah. Oh, you're just, you [00:51:00] just sweetened it up and put No, didn't


Darin: Nope. Didn't do anything. That was, uh, that was it. I don't know how you knew that, but my next question was what?

Oh my God. What was the inspiration for Never trust a Puppet? Oh, well

Heywood: that, that's, uh, that's my darling wife. Mm-hmm. Um, she. Uh, there's a picture of her. The picture on the, on the cover is, is her. And, uh, in the original picture, it was her and her brother in, in like a, a formal, uh, photographic studio. Mm-hmm.

You know, that you used to take, you know, you take your kids to the photo studio, whatever, and get picture taken. And her brother had a great big smile on his face laughing and she's like, I said, I said, why did you look like that? It says, cause cause the, the photography had a puppet and I didn't

Darin: like it.[00:52:00]

Oh, that's awesome.

Heywood: So, so for years I've been, I've been like, uh, I mean, my people call it the Shirley voice. I've always been like, you don't even know. You don't even know what you're doing. You know? So it was just my, you know, terrible imitation of her voice, Uhhuh and, um, Uh, so I started, so I just like started going, never trust, pop it, pop it true, you know, in the, in the Shirley voice, just to bug her mainly.

And, uh, you know, 90% of what goes on around here and, um-huh. So I thought nobody, you know, and, and I, I, I did it for my, uh, my daughter and my, uh, my nieces who all know her and thought, thought it was really funny that, that I did that. And, uh, so I never thought, you know, it's like I. It was just kind of a weird thing that I just did around the house, Uhhuh, and, uh, so [00:53:00] I, I wrote out the song and I, I try and it, it ki it kind of surprised me that, that it actually translated out, you know, out from in here, out into the world.

Darin: Well, I love how when you introduce it, you're like, this next song is a little odd. And everybody starts laughing cuz your, your whole show is a little odd. But when I saw you at Wiley's, uh, you're gonna go, oh, that's where I saw you. Cuz I'm the one who yelled, never Trust a puppet. And you played it at Wiley's because I requested it.

So thank you. I was the guy. Yeah. So how many, um, where have you toured? I mean, you've been, you've been all over the world, right?

Heywood: Uh, you know, or all over the United States or the. I've been all over like four or five states. Okay. I think I've played, I've played a little bit, you know, it's mainly Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, uh, a little Illinois and up into [00:54:00] Wisconsin a little bit, and I've, I've played up in Minneapolis a few times, but it's, it's, I've, I found that there was just kind of a.

I don't know. Almost like a, if I go too far east, they stop getting it. If I go too far west, they stop getting it, you know? It's, I don't know, it's just a weird thing. And I, and I'm always, you know, shamelessly hawking my t-shirts and stuff, so it's, you know, I have all these bags of stuff, so it's, it is just, yeah, it's simple.

And I, and I've made a real good living, you know, in, in four or five states, so,

Darin: well, hell, you, you know, good lord, Darren, if you, if it works, it works. Yeah.

Heywood: Yeah. It's. Yeah, there was just, uh, no point in going anywhere else. Yeah.

Darin: Well tell everybody where you're going, uh, where your upcoming shows are, and if they wanted to go online and buy some of your merch, if they, you tell 'em where they can do that.

Heywood: Okay. I'm, uh, God, I, I sent you, uh, a, uh, copy of my, um, [00:55:00] itinerary. I think I, I either texted or emailed it to you. Okay. Um, I'm, I'm playing in. Kokomo Indiana, uh, and, uh, plain Plainfield, Indiana this week at a, uh, I don't know, sh Shriners. And this is no help. Um, uh, if you go on, you go on Haywood banks.com, it tells where I'm playing.

And then, uh, next week I'm playing, I'm playing Toledo at a Unitarian church. Oh, wow. At, um, on, on Saturday night and, uh, that, that tickets that's on Eventbrite. Um, the, uh, tickets for this weekend are at, uh, um, uh, mad Hatter. Mad Hatter shows, uh, dot com. Okay. Mad Hatter. And then, uh, and then in, in May, I'm playing at a place called One Night Stands Up in White Lake, Michigan.

It's, uh, It's [00:56:00] just, uh, north of Detroit there. Okay. And then I do, do, don't do anything all summer. Is that by choice? Uh, well, people don't like to, people don't go to comedy clubs in the summer. Okay. You know, they, oh, it's doesn't get dark until nine. You know, it's, or 10, you know, people don't wanna go inside.

You know, they get, you know, you know, here in the Midwest you get, get, uh, get two months of decent weather, you know, so. Yeah.

Darin: Yeah. Stay outside all

Mike: my, okay, so Shriner's at Kokomo Indiana. This Kokomo in Indiana. Right? I didn't know there was a Kokomo in Indiana. Uh, then Plainfield Fraternal Order of the Eagles on the Saturday and the first Unitarian Church of Toledo, the 29th.

Eventbrite. Yeah. Yeah. Well, thank, okay. You passed the memory test. Oh wow. Why?

Heywood: Yeah, it's, it's usually, if I can remember the, uh, six, le six number code when I'm, uh, doing, verifying something

Darin: I. Well, hey, what this has been, [00:57:00] uh, this has been a real treat. Thank you so much. Uh, I know when I, when I sent to the invite, I told you, said this, well, no, by, by no means boost your career, but it'll be a big thrill for us.

Yeah. And, uh, we, we really appreciate it. And you know what? If you're ever in Cincinnati, uh, maybe we can talk again sometime, or you're welcome to come back on our show anytime you want. I've been well, thank. I've been a fan of yours for a very, very, very long time, and, uh, my friend Michael Flannery says hello.

But, uh, you're, you've been extremely kind and we can't thank you enough. Yeah, thank you very, very

Mike: much. Haywood.

Darin: Say hi to Michael for me. I, I will. So, uh, wanna thank everybody else out there for listening and, uh, go to irritable dad syndrome.com and you can sign up for, uh, merch and you can do all that stuff.

But, uh, uh, again, thank you so much and, uh, we hope to see you again on Irritable Dad syndrome. Yeah. Cool. Wow, Hayward, thank you. Yeah, thank you very much. Thank you. Thank you. Well, that guys. Yeah. All right. Have a great night. Uh, I will send you, yeah, I'll send you a [00:58:00] link when we, uh, uh, I edit the show, we add, we put fake commercials in the middle, and we put an open and a closed and some music.

And, uh, if Mike and I, uh, screw up or throw in a cursor, we put our cursing duck in there. Yes, sir. Which we didn't, we didn't do any of that this week.

Mike: No, no. We may throw in some, just to make it sound like

Darin: Exactly. People like, where's the, where's the cursing

Mike: dog? So, yeah. Darren does the audio. Portion of the podcast.

We, that's our core show. But then there's also a video portion. So, I mean, you can't see what it looks like now, but I'll, I'll do the edit, uh, the video editing for it, we put it on their YouTube site, but it actually shows up on Dayton tv. Yep. Um, cable access tv. So it's, we're Wayne's World. Yeah, we're big time.

Darin: So here we go from there. Awesome. Thanks guys. All Heywood. Have a great night. Good night. All right, bye.

Heywood: How do we get outta here?

Mike: Recording

Heywood: stopped.[00:59:00]